Valve’s Gabe Newell being flown to Australia by gaming community

By Stephany Nunneley, Thursday, 1 October 2009 18:02 GMT

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Valve’s Gabe Newell has decided to fly to Australia to meet local game designer Joe W-A, who raised over $3000 for Newell’s visit through the gaming community.

“The power of the gaming community and their ability to rally around a cause – be it serious or fun in nature – is amazing,” said Newell. “In 2003, the community helped the FBI and European law enforcement officials find the people who stole the Half-Life 2 source code. This year, the community is putting me on a plane to the other side of the world to meet Joe W-A and see his MOD.

“It’s going to be a fun trip.”

Newell and Joe will meet in Sydney next week, with Newell donating the three-grand Joe raised to charity instead of using it for his trip.

Press release after the jump.

October 1, 2009 – Valve, creators of best-selling game franchises (such as Half-Life and Counter-Strike) and leading technologies (such as Steam and Source), today announced its studio co-founder and president, Gabe Newell, will be visiting Australia next week to meet local game designer Joe W-A, who raised over $3000 for Newell’s visit through the gaming community.

The fundraising began after Joe heard that Newell had recently flown the leaders of a gaming community group boycotting Valve’s upcoming Left 4 Dead 2 to Valve’s Seattle, WA headquarters. Joe emailed to ask if Newell would fly him to Seattle so Joe could show him his “mod” (a PC gaming term for modifying an existing game into something new).

Newell playfully replied that he wouldn’t fly Joe to Seattle because he was “boycotting” Joe’s mod. The Australian-based game designer appealed to the game community for $3,000-the funds necessary to fly Newell halfway around the world-and raised the money in less than 48 hours.

“The power of the gaming community and their ability to rally around a cause – be it serious or fun in nature – is amazing,” said Gabe Newell, president and co-founder of Valve. “In 2003, the community helped the FBI and European law enforcement officials find the people who stole the Half-Life 2 source code. This year, the community is putting me on a plane to the other side of the world to meet Joe W-A and see his MOD. It’s going to be a fun trip.”

Newell and Joe will meet in Australia next week. Reports of the trip will be posted on L4D.com’s blog section by Valve employee Erik Johnson, who will be traveling with Newell down under.

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